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help exchange   Host 15218
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All Year: Yes
Area (ha): 15
Persons: 2
Category: Organic Farmstay
Host ID: 15218
Country: Germany

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Last Updated: January 10, 2015

We are a family of 6 (we are aged 39/40, kids are born 2001, 2003, 2006 and 2008).

!!!Last Minute gap from 06th November until 10th December!!! Minimum 2 weeks. Mainly wood work (for male) and renovation / DIY work (painting walls...) (males and females).

AND: We need a skilled webdesigner and programmer (preferrable with own computer) for our website for the sustainable cente. A PC with Dreamweaver software would be also available...

Please read the FULL profile if you want to get an answer. No Host-SPAM mails will be answered!

Our project 2014/15:

renovating an old farmhouse and convert it into a sustainable courses centre. That means some minor building work left, painting jobs and some renovation works...

autum: ground work around the house, gardening/fruit/veggies processing, in winter: forestry work /fencing and wood splitting/cutting

We have a running smallholding farm working with organic methods and permaculture.

During the whole year there will be always some work on the farm like gardening, fruit processing etc. We have some milk goats and sheep, geese, chicken, a husky dog named Barley and a cat.

We're living in a very small village called Cortnitz (43 inhabitants) near Dresden (90 km away), about 200 km south of Berlin. We have a small garden (always some work there in 3 seasons...) and about 50 fruit trees. We do love cycling and being outdoor.

We are militant non-smokers! :-)
No smoking in the house, around the house or in sight of the house. No alcohol/drugs.

We live rural. There are not much possibilities to have a big party around, so this place is more suitable for people who like it a bit more quiet and green and having an evening at a bonfire behind the house. If you want to go around one or two bicycles will be there for use or to reach the train station. Nice places to visit nearby: 1000 years old towns Bautzen and Görlitz, cultural center Dresden, hiking and climbing in the Saxon Switzerland, Wroclaw (Poland) and a two day trip maybe Prague or Berlin.

We usually have only one or two helpers at the same time as for us it is important to have a cultural exchange as well. Up to now we had an estonian family, Kaya from USA and Lucie from England (already 2 times) and Alexandra/Morgan from Australia, Alex from France (already 3 times!), Matthew from Australia, Amy from England, Gilbert from Spain (2 times), Francesca from Italy, Szymon from Poland, Juraj from Slovakia, Brendan from England, Ramona/Joshua from America, Thomas from England, Andrea also from England, Berry from Ireland, Jörg from northern Germany, Flora from Hungary, Cora from England, Brianna from Canada, Daniel from England, Steph from Australia, Jeanette from Danmark and Claire from Australia... Be our next helper!

Families welcome if you have an little extra pay for the food and accomodation.

We have NO INTERNET for helpers, only in emergency or for once or twice a week you can check mails during daytime in the office (no Wlan, no skype). If you want to use the internet more often please bring your own mobile internet, T-Mobile and Vodafone have best coverage here.

We are not vegetarians but we are not eating too much meat (mainly our own produced meat from goats/sheep/ducks/geese - so that is limited). We dont mind if the helper is vegetarian as long as he/she can handle that we are not and dont expect to cook special things for her/him. We don't buy special vegan food or lots of fruits and veggies, so if you are vegan its probably not your place to be here.

Please be aware that we expect help in the household as well beside the work as this are common duties for everyone in the house (like dish washing, preparing breakfast...) without asking you every single time to do so.

We both have been volunteering abroad (Marie 8 month in Russia, Stefan 11 month in Papua New Guinea). And we lived a winter on a scottish Isle 2013-2014. So the kids speak some english as well. We try to live with as low impact to the nature as possible. We produce our own solar energy (5 KWp), have a solar stove (for cooking during sunshine), solar heated water and do lots of other crazy things. We might not be typical germans - you may have to find out.

Next train station where we could pick you up is Pommritz, next Airports Dresden, Berlin and Leipzig (trains form there). Or check or for car sharing (check for destination Bautzen).

Type of help:
Animal care,
Help in the house,
Help with Eco project,
General Maintenance,
Cooking / shopping,

Always a lot to do on a very small farm. But great place to be in the nature as well.

Please apply only if you already have experiences with manual work. Please no spoiled kids from the city that dont know how to handle tools. Be aware that you will get dirty while working! Check our feedbacks. No one complained yet and no one left earlier then planned :-)

Languages spoken
german, english, wendish, some french, some swedish, some basic slawic languages
own room (with 1-2 beds), no wireless LAN! We have two studios in the garden without running water and energy, but lovely to live in with a basic standard. In the sustainable courses centre there will be some rooms for helpers as soon as the rooms are renovated (hopefully in summer)

If you want there is the chance of camping under the apple trees as well... (maybe not in winter...)

What else ...
We live in a beautiful village, very rural and with open land and forests around - so perfect for those who want to be away from it all. We are not vegetarians but if you are its usually no problem. We try to live as respectful as possible with the nature. We have a car but try to avoid using it. We love cycling and do most ways on a bicycle. The next nice lake is just 7 km away, the next larger forest 1 km.

We live in a 260 years old farmhouse (room heights usually around 1,90 m) - so it is special kind of comfort living without high tech and TV but with lots of flair. We have some cherry, apple and plum trees and a small garden.

We are all of us people who love to be outside. Germany is not as wet and cold as you might think.

As we experienced that lots of helpers haven't read the whole profile we ask you to read it carefully, in a short:
- rural location
- no alcohol, drugs, smoking
- only YOUR mobile internet or after agreement very limited cable internet with YOUR computer
- 25 hrs work per week + the normal household duties
- experiences with manual work (your hands will get dirty!)
- usually minimum stay 3 weeks or longer, please no requests for shorter then 2 weeks

If you understood all of these please write in your FIRST mail the codeword "Cortnitz-Saxony", all e-mails without this codeword will be denied! If you read until here and use the codeword: Lucky you! 80% of the requesting helpers won't do this!

Have a great sunny day!

Volunteering hours expected

5 hrs daily - feel free to ask for more:-), but 2 days a week free (usually sunday+monday)

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